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Clark Law Firm

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Bankruptcy Lawyer in Birmingham Alabama


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Clients choose John W. Clark IV not only because he is award-winning and experienced, but also because he is highly trusted and regarded. He has represented hundreds of small and medium-sized companies in business and commercial law across Alabama and in the Florida panhandle.‍

John’s mix of education and experience provides clients with a competitive edge. With a bachelor’s degree in business administration and a master’s degree in banking and finance, he is grounded in the inner workings of strategic and effective business operations. Pair that knowledge with his trial and negotiation skills — across many industries — and you get the best of both worlds: an astute business counselor and seasoned litigator.

What Are The Differences Between Chapter 7 And Chapter 13 For Individuals?

In chapter 7 your assets and liabilities are essentially “frozen” with the filing of the bankruptcy petition. You keeps the “exempt” property/assets. The bankruptcy trustee takes the non-exempt property/assets and liquidates that property. The trustee then distributes the proceeds of the liquidation of the non-exempt property/assets to your existing unsecured creditors. You are then relieved (discharged) of the duty to pay most existing debts and your future earnings cannot be seized by the existing creditors. Lenders with loans on a house or vehicle are either paid as agreed or the items are surrendered to the lender.

Please note that some debts survive the chapter 7 or chapter 13 process – such as student loans and certain taxes. Read More

chapter 7

Chapter 13 instead focuses on your future income rather than your existing property and assets. In Chapter 13, you keep all of your property and assets and pay your creditors out of your future income through a “plan.” Monthly payments are made to the bankruptcy trustee. The bankruptcy trustee takes those payments and, in turn, pays your “secured” debts (home mortgage, car loan, etc.). Then, if there is money left over after payment to the secured creditors, the trustee pays the remaining disposable income to your existing unsecured creditors based on your plan. The court-approved plan lasts for 3 to 5 years. At the end of the plan, the balance of the unpaid debts included in the plan is forgiven (discharged). Read More

Chapter 13

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Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions

  • A bankruptcy attorney will prepare your bankruptcy “petition” to file with the court. Depending upon your circumstances, a bankruptcy petition may be 50 pages or more. The petition includes all your financial information, your financial history, and a list of all of your assets, cars, real estate, personal property, bank… Read More

  • Certain debt under the Bankruptcy Code cannot be eliminated and is known as “non-dischargeable” debt. Non-dischargeable debt includes recent income taxes, student loans, alimony, child support, restitution or compensation ordered by a criminal court, civil judgments for injuries due to intentional torts or driving while intoxicated, and any debts incurred… Read More

  • Yes. When you file your bankruptcy “petition,” all foreclosure or eviction proceedings are immediately stopped. At the moment you file a petition seeking bankruptcy relief, the Bankruptcy Code imposes an injunction on all of your creditors called the “automatic stay.” The automatic stay prohibits your creditors, including a mortgage lender… Read More

  • Most likely. You may be able to retain your home if you have no “equity” in the property. If your home is currently valued at less than the outstanding amount of your mortgage (or the outstanding amount of your first, second, third mortgage, etc. when combined), then you home has… Read More

  • Yes. Under a Chapter 13 plan, you must prove to the Bankruptcy Court that you have sufficient income to once again start paying your monthly mortgage payments. You must also prove to the Court that you can pay the past due amounts to your mortgage lender (the “arrears”) spread out… Read More

Call Us Now For A Personalized Case Evaluation (205) 506-3354